The government of the Bahamas has signed a letter of intent with Damen Shipyards Group of Holland to buy eight long-range patrol vessels and an emergency relief craft for the Royal Bahamas Defense Force as well as the upgrading and construction of three bases in the Bahamas.
The vessels include a dedicated roll-on, roll-off landing craft (a Stan Lander 5612), which will be fitted with a 25-ton crane and containers to provide emergency relief, medical facilities, desalinated water and sanitary equipment in the event of a natural disaster.
Eight patrol vessels — four Stan Patrol 4207s and four SPa 3007s — will join the Bahamas’ fleet. These vessels are designed to operate in shallow waters and “will help to plug the gaps in the security network while addressing the concern of local fishermen who have been demanding more protection for this vital sector of the economy,” according to a government statement.
Included in the contract is an upgrade of the Bahamas Class vessels that entered service in 1999.
The contract includes a spares and training package so the vessels can be maintained and operated by Bahamians. The project is set to begin in early 2014.